Cleaning Your Air Conditioner’s Condenser Unit

If you live in an area where summer temperatures can climb to uncomfortable levels, you likely rely on an air conditioner to help you cool the air inside your home. Maintaining your air conditioner is essential when it comes to ensuring you will have access to the cool air you need when summer hits. One important maintenance task you shouldn't overlook is cleaning your air conditioner's condenser unit.

Here are two steps you can take to help improve the efficiency and function of your unit's condenser in the future.

1. Clean the condenser fins.

Inside your air conditioner are some fins that are designed to help heat move away from your condenser unit so that cooled air can be produced more quickly. Since the condenser is sucking in air from outdoors, the delicate condenser fins can get bent or dirty as they come into contact with airborne contaminants. Cleaning these fins can help your condenser function more efficiently.

Start by cutting power to your condenser by either unplugging it from the exterior wall of your home or shutting off the circuit breaker routing an electrical current to your condenser unit. Unscrew the outer cover of your condenser to expose the fins. Using a vacuum cleaner with a soft brush attachment, carefully remove dirt and debris from the surface of each condenser fin.

2. Clean the interior of the condenser unit.

Once you have cleaned off the condenser fins, it's time to tackle the debris that finds its way into the interior of your condenser unit. Start by carefully unscrewing the fan to gain access to the interior section of your condenser unit. Be careful not to jostle the fins, or you could cause them to bend.

The fan will not completely detach from your condenser because it is connected with some wiring. If you find that your fan's wiring isn't long enough to allow you to take the fan out and rest it on the ground, enlist the help of a friend or family member to hold the fan out of the way while you clean. Use a vacuum with an extension tool to get rid of any dust or debris that has settled on your condenser's interior.

Taking the time to clean your condenser by vacuuming both the condenser fins and the unit's interior will allow your air conditioner to run more efficiently as it cools your home this summer. For more information, a specialist in this area, such as Doctor Fix-It, can help.